Recap: First 3 Episodes of NOFX: Backstage Passport

Articles | Apr 28th, 2008

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I have never really been a fan of NOFX, in fact I hated when my friends played their music. But for some reason, I can listen to their music now. Who knows why? I always appreciated their humor, social commentary and what they have done for the punk scene; but I couldn’t stand Fat Mike’s whiny vocals. Maybe I just find his vocals less irritating now?

NOFX recently premiered their backstage reality TV show on FUSE called “NOFX: Backstage Passport.” New episodes are on FUSE on Tuesday nights at 10:30pm. The show follows the band around to third world countries and places that they never tour (for a reason). I knew this mini-series/show was coming out sooner or later, but I just didn’t know when it was airing. I just happened to stumble upon it on a lazy Saturday afternoon when FUSE was airing all 3 episodes back to back. I missed the first 5 or 10 minutes but I’m sure I’ll see it at some point. As soon as I started watching the series, I was hooked. Not only is the band a bunch of funny guys, so are the crew members. Plus it’s just interesting to see the behind the scenes stuff, especially with going to shady countries like Colombia.

Episode 1
The band say their goodbyes to their families and begin their crazy tour. I found it amusing that El Hefe packed nothing but junk food. Did the guy even pack underwear? NOFX’s show in Brazil goes extremely shitty because Melvin’s guitar messes up. Instead of fixing it and playing on, he fiddles with his tuner for 10 minutes and pisses off Fat Mike. The crowd turns on them and starts throwing shit. I never got that about crowds, you pay money to see the band perform and when something bad happens; they turn on the band. Their next stop was suppose to be in Colombia, where the venue didn’t even know a show was being held there. So they cancel the show and the promoter starts receiving death threats from people. YIKES! Why the hell would they book a show in fucking Medellin, Colombia?!

Episode 2
The band played some place in Ecuador, where a bunch of rich kids rented out tennis courts. I wish I could rent out a place for big bands to play. After that, they head to Chile where things finally got good for the band. The fans in Chile were absolutely crazy, and jumping down from the rafters. Plus they kept running on stage and choking the band members. I’m not sure why foreign punk fans think headlocks is a friendly greeting. Things get REALLY rocky again when the NOFX heads to Peru. Before they even got there, they knew things were going to shady there. The Peruvian promoter was a complete idiot and didn’t provide simple tasks for the bands. The crew finally gets to the place they are playing and it’s just a field of dirt. The crew sets up the stage but the police show up and shut down everything because there weren’t any permits. The crowd shows up anyway and causes a near riot. The crew get smuggled out of the venue to avoid being murdered by the fans. The next morning the fans show up at their hotel and Fat Mike plays them a few songs on someone’s acoustic guitar. I thought that was a really cool moment, and nice of Fat Mike to do that. After all, the fans got screwed the most out of that deal.

Episode 3
Bye Bye Shady South America and hello Japan and Singapore. In Japan, they go to a crazy S&M restaurant/bar place. One of the crew members gets tied up, beaten, strung up and hung from the ceiling…yet he loves every minute of it. Mmm ok, I think I’d be crying in pain. At one point, the band is late to a show because El Hefe is missing. He was stoned (it appeared) and was out eating food and lost track of time. I would hate having to be the crew and having to explain what happened to a sold out crowd. After Japan, the band goes to Singapore and are worried about bringing drugs. How about leave the drugs at home so you don’t go to jail and then die from the death penalty? The band ignores those pesky death penalty rules and “ride the green dragon.” I have no idea what the green dragon is but it looked like green coke. I’m really surprised that they were doing that stuff on TV. Can’t they get arrested for that? I can’t remember the rest of the episode.

The next episode they head to China and Malaysia. So far this series has been very amusing and definitely worth watching…even if you don’t like the band! The next episode is on Tuesday at 10:30pm on FUSE.

Here’s Fat Mike performing in front of the crazed Peru fans: